ICPR – International Commission for the Protection of the Rhine

Threat to groundwater

Lowered groundwater tables only pose a problem in areas of Moselle/Saar, the Lower Rhine and the Delta Rhine, in particular in mining areas.

The chemical groundwater state is more critical. Parts of the groundwater are at risk in almost the entire Rhine watershed. Locally, groundwater may be polluted by historic pollutions or accidents with substances hazardous to water. Exhaustive pollution, particularly with nitrate and plant protection agents from agricultural surfaces is considerably more problematic. Agricultural applications must be further optimised with a view to avoiding or at least reducing nitrate leaching. This also applies to the use of plant protection agents.